Where is the Nigerian Government?

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Beginning on January 3rd, a raid occurred in Nigeria resulting in the deaths of roughly 2,000 people according to local officials. The raid lasted about a week.

Chairman Musa Bukar of the local government where Baga is located said, “Dead bodies litter the bushes in the area and it is still not safe to go and pick them [up] for burial[…]Some people who hid in their homes were burned alive.”

The town of Baga, several neighboring cities, and a multinational military base were taken over by hundreds of armed men.

A local district head, Baba Abba Hassan, said that the militants brought out motorcycles, chased down, and fired randomly at civilians who were fleeing.

About 30,000 people were displaced due to the fact that 16 villages were attacked during the week long raid. In the capital of Borno state, 20,000 of those displaced camped according to authorities and arrangements for the other 10,000 are being made.

Boko Haram is not a new group. They have been terrorizing Nigeria since 2009 and are responsible for attacks against police, civilians, schools, and churches. They’ve bombed several government buildings and the the one who kidnapped the 200 schoolgirls which spawned the worldwide #BringBackOurGirls.

As the Islamic insurgent group, Boko Haram, continues to make attacks, a common question has arisen. Where is the Nigerian government?

According to Adotei Akwei, advocacy director for Africa Amnesty Intl., The military fought back but ran out of supplies quickly and were forced to retreat. One of the biggest theories for this is that there is corruption in the government causing the military to have insufficient supplies. Another theory is that there is “lack of leadership” or even followers of Boko Haram within the government.

Regardless of the reason, it is clear that the Nigerian government’s lack of action has become a serious problem.